11 Free Things To Do In Dubai


11 Free Things To Do In Dubai

Free things to do in Dubai... This is not a joke!

Because sometimes, you want to see something else in Dubai besides the 5 stars brunches and private clubs, we selected some activities and places to see without spending a single dirham in Dubai.  

Whether you visit Dubai, are living here or on a stopover in Dubai, here is our list of the best free things to do in Dubai:

1. Al Bastakiya, Old Dubai

This pearl of culture and architecture is nestled in Old Dubai. Take your time to stroll around Bastakiya, have a look in the Dubai Museum if you feel like it, and get lost in the streets of Old Dubai, you will find some hidden little cafes and art exhibitions. A must do, and it’s totally free!


2. Secret Beach, Jumeirah

JBR and Kite Beach do have amazing beaches, but sometimes all you want is a little less people and construction noises, while keeping the great view of the Burj al Arab and the turquoise blue water. Welcome to Secret Beach! And because we’re nice like that, here’s a map to get there. 

3. Road trip to Hatta Mountains

There are lots of places or go on a road trip with friends without even exiting the UAE, and Hatta Mountains is one of them! Not only the decor literally out of this world and seem very Mars-like, it’s the best place for a barbecue, picnic and why not a quiet evening around a campfire with friends or family. You will need a 4X4 though!

4. Alserkal Avenue, Al Quoz

Al Quoz might be the industrial area of Dubai, but the area also hides Alserkal Avenue, a place full of hidden gems, such as the latest art exhibition, pop up shops, an outdoors cinema, many healthy restaurant and a beautiful photo gallery. On the to-do list!

5. Gold and spice souk, Old Dubai

The Gold and Spice Souk in Old Dubai  is a must see for any visitor and expat in Dubai. Located in Old Dubai, you will find an authenticity that is sometimes lacking and a unique atmosphere that seem a thousand miles away from Dubai Marina or Downtown Dubai. Soak up the smells and noises, so unique and enjoyable.

6. Abra tour, Old Dubai

Okay, we lied. The abra tour will set you back as much as AED 1 per person, but it's still something unique in Dubai! These wooden boats cross Dubai Creek from Bur Dubai to Deira  and vice versa multiple times everyday and make for a very pleasant transportation across the Creek. Pack your dirham and check it out!

11 free things to do in Dubai
11 free things to do in Dubai

7. The Walk, JBR

On The Walk in Jumeirah Beach Residence, you will find many restaurants for literally any taste, a cinema, a beach, outdoor gym equipment, photo booths, a giant screen, a Saturday night market and many other surprises! It's also one of the rare places in Dubai where walking is enjoyable. Go on a Saturday afternoon and check out the cute market, get some food and have an improvised picnic on the beach! 

11 free things to do in Dubai

8. Off Roading to Fossil Rock

All you need to have to go offroad is (a friend with) a 4X4! And obviously know how to drive in the dunes and sand. Head towards Hatta and stop over in Fossil Rock, where locals and offroad amateurs reunite on the weekend. If you don’t feel like offroading, which is totally fine, sit and watch the locals, they are impressive and aren’t scared of much! Piece of advice, don’t be on their way.

Warning: Offroading and dune bashing can be dangerous, be sure to know how to drive in the sand and bring cables you to avoid getting stuck (it happens often!).

9. Ripe Market, Zabeel Park / Time Square Mall

11 free things to do in Dubai
11 free things to do in Dubai

Ripe ME takes place on the weekend in Zabeel Park when the temperature allows it and inside Time Square when it is too hot. While it’s really nice to stroll around and have a picnic in Zabeel Park, you can also find little hidden gems, crafts, homemade items, gifts and plenty of fresh and organic fruits and vegetables.

10. Dragon Mart, Al Awir Road

A pleasure for some, a nightmare for others, Dragon Mart is an endless zigzag maze full of literally everything you may need in a lifetime. A Chinese-inspired market, Dragon Mart is well known for its ability to offer everything and anything you need. Go there if you are looking for fake grass, a bicycle wheel, a phone cover or just for the fun of it. Warning: It's exhausting!

11. Fountain Show - Downtown Dubai

Nothing less than the biggest fountain show on Earth, right by the tallest building ever and the largest mall in the world, the Dubai fountain show is absolutely beautiful and needs to fit in your to-do list in Dubai. The shows takes place every 30 minutes from 6pm to 11pm from Sunday-Wednesday, 6pm to 11.30pm on Thursday and at 1.30pm and 2pm on Friday.

Pro tip: Go at night time, it’s even better!

11 free things to do in Dubai

If you know any other free things to do in Dubai, with friends or family, feel free to comment below!